Legendary Roca brothers Joan, Josep, and Jordi of Celler de Can Roca (ranked one of the worlds best restaurants), landed in Houston this week on stop four of their 5-city, 3-country 2015 Cooking Tour Experience hosted by BBVA Compass. The 18-course dinner took dinners on a journey of innovative and inspired interpretations of dishes representing each tour city including Buenos Aires, Argentina, Miami, Florida, Birmingham, Alabama, Houston, Texas, and Istanbul, Turkey.
Houston was the only repeat destination for the 2015 tour, "We were very impressed by the gastronomic offer here in Houston and this year that impression was confirmed," said Joan.
"We think here in Houston there are many fantastic chefs, great produce, great products, great ingredients and there is a gastronomic revolution taking place in this part of the United States. It's a very interesting blend of cuisines that come together from Latin America and also from the Southern United States. It's been very, very interesting for us."
This year's menu incorporated the low & slow meat cooking technique the Rocas observed in Houston last year in the form of a 72-hour braised beef ‘taco' with grilled watermelon, plaintain puree, banana leaf salsa, and roasted pepper & onion sofrito. An ode to the Space City came through as a playful yet incomparable answer to the question "What does the moon taste like?" (hint: it involves truffle mousse and black sesame). Youngest brother pastry chef Jordi wowed the crowd with two distinctly different desserts: one a cool, bright, icy, & floral version of an ice cream cupcake, the other an intoxicating chocolate creation of ethereal components.
Middle brother and sommelier Josep elevated the meal with nine exemplary wines paired to perfection. Embarking on this tour meant closing their popular restaurant Celler de Can Roca, based in Giorona, Spain. "Our restaurant is wherever our team is, not just the three brothers, but our team," explained Josep.
"We want to seduce our patrons and want to communicate the love that comes from Celler de Can Roca to our guests."
BBVA Compass hosted the trio along with their entire 40-member restaurant staff as part of a three-year partnership between the bank and the restaurant that has twice been ranked, "The top 50 World's Best Restaurants" by Restaurant Magazine. A reception was held at the BBVA Compass tower on Post Oak and the dinner hosted by Hugo Ortega and Tracy Vaught at their restaurant Caracol. The event took place over August 24 - 26 and included three dinners, with only a 100 guests each.